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Grief Counseling and Grief Therapy for Adults

Doctors will often recommend that their patient undergo some sort of group grief counseling to help the grieving process be more bearable. The very act of talking out the various fears, and regrets can bring peace to the patient much more quickly than if they are left to struggle independent from a support network. Patients and their friends and family should feel comfortable to talk about the illness. During this period the illness is often on the forefront of everyone's thoughts, and most people don't want to talk about it because they are afraid of voicing their fears or of saying the "wrong thing". If one person says something regarding the illness it gives others permission to share what they have been desperately needing or wanting to express. Things that need to be discussed are unfinished business or legal issues, forgiveness, funeral arrangements, wills, or the simple act of saying, "I love you." It is okay to break the ice but be sensitive to the fact that somebody may not be ready to talk as it may be too painful or frustrating.

Grief counseling helps mourners with uncomplicated grief go through the phases of grief (shock, denial, anger, depression, and acceptance). Grief counseling can be provided by professionally trained people, or in self-help groups where bereaved people help other bereaved people. All of these services may be available in individual or group settings. Grief counseling helps the patient and/or mourner accept the loss by talking about him or her. They also help the bereaved to identify and express their feelings and to make decisions about the imminent (or past) death. Grief counseling helps the survivors to begin new relationships or to help patients with unfinished business before they die. Grief counseling is not just for the patient, but is an important aspect for anyone particularly close to the patient, such as family, that will have to live without them. Occasionally, doctors may suggest personal counseling or recommend someone to grief therapy.

Grief therapy is used with people who are experiencing complicated grief. In grief therapy, the mourner talks about the deceased and tries to recognize if he or she is experiencing an expected amount of emotion about the loss. Grief therapy may allow the mourner to see that anger, guilt, or other negative or uncomfortable feelings can exist at the same time as more positive feelings about the person who died. In grief therapy, six tasks may be used to help the bereaved with accepting the loss. The therapy will help them develop the ability to experience, express, and adjust to painful grief-related changes. The mourner will also find effective ways to cope with painful changes. Grief therapy will help the mourner to know they can still honor their relationship with the deceased and still move on. The mourner will be encouraged to stay healthy and keep functioning. Therapy will also help the person to reestablish relationships and understand that others may have difficulty empathizing with the grief they experience. Lastly, grief therapy will help the bereaved to develop a healthy image of oneself and the world.


Please contact us with any questions or if you or someone you love has mesothelioma or another asbestos disease. If you are looking for a mesothelioma attorney, we suggest contacting RPWB, LLC.